Ambulance sparks fly at City Council meeting

Contentious discussion ends with New Hampton tabling ambulance ‘seed money’

The New Hampton City Council once again tabled paying its share of “seed money” to the Chickasaw County Ambulance Council.

The unanimous vote came after a lengthy and, at times, contentious discussion during a meeting last Monday evening that was marked by several heated exchanges and city officials expressing frustration with county officials, especially Supervisor Jake Hackman.

But Monday’s vote to table paying the Ambulance Council $7,295.70 — New Hampton’s share of the $25,000 seed money the new council was supposed to use to generate requests for proposals (RFPs) by hiring an attorney or consultant — raises a number of questions.

The main one is what does it do to the agreement reached by Chickasaw County and its cities to settle a lawsuit filed by the county against the cities over the payment of a two-year ambulance contract the county signed with the Chickasaw Ambulance Council in June 2019?

Councilman Scott Perkins, though, said he was adamantly opposed to paying the seed money if it was going to be used to pay rent to house ambulances.

“All I’m saying I’m not going to approve sending $7,295.70 back to the Ambulance Council if they’re going to turn it around and use it for garage rental, plain and simple,” he said during the discussion that took up more than half of the regualr City Council meeting. “There are five other votes  but I won’t approve it.”

And that stance lit the fuse for what, at times, was an explosive meeting.

— For more on this story, see the April 13 Tribune

New Hampton Tribune

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New Hampton, IA 50659
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